Gulf Coast Championships/Texas State JOAD Target Championships

The State JOAD tournament was held this last weekend (June 16 & 17, 2001) in conjunction with the Gulf Coast Championships, in Victoria Texas. There were 43 (!) JOAD archers signed up for the event and the conditions were near ideal.

Unlike last year when the coastal winds played a part in scores, there was only a breath of a breeze most of the time, and the rainclouds threatened for only a few minutes during the initial warmups on Friday.

TWENTY-FIVE state records were re-set by the archers! The organizers, Jim Krueger and Tom Barker, organized this event to a "T" - there was a beverage trailer provided by Pepsi, target stands and butts provide by Ben Dybala from his 4H'ers club, plenty of shade in the form of tents both private and TSAA-provided, and moderate temperatures were the surprising rule.

The organizers elected to have shooting start at 4PM on Saturday thereby missing the worst of the south Texas sun's intense effects. There were a couple of equipment failures, but otherwise shooting was continuous and uneventful. The field was laid out very nicely and marked clearly as to distance and shooting lines. A unique twist was provided by Tom and Jim - at the worst point of the heat of the day, they handed out WATER GUNS and provided ample water to load them.

The judge and sheriff, Rick Stonebraker, was issued a high-power/high-capacity super soaker, and the kids all proceeded to have a BALL. With a few simple safety rules in place, the kids were able to cool off, have fun, and otherwise enjoy themselves. In addition Rick Stonebraker brought his water balloon loogie, which shoots water-filled balloons downrange to the targets at 50-70 meters' distance quite nicely. Several volunteers, including Tom Barker (DOS), were brave enough to stand in harm's way and dodge the incoming water bombs. Talk about mixed emotions - do I let it hit me, and get the cooling effect of the water, and the sting of the hurtling missle, or not?

Anyway, the water guns proved to be very positive, and as mentioned before, the kids managed to break and re-set 25 different state records!!!

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